Stephane Wrembel: Origins
On the surface I may seem like a strictly rock and roll guy. Believe it or not there are other things that rattle the speakers in my home. Such is the case with the Django Reinhardt inspired music of Stephane Wrembel. I was fortunate to have stumbled upon him performing at Radegast Hall in Brooklyn a few years back. He was there again on my visit last summer so this time I picked up a CD.
Stephane is an amazing musician and almost equally talented composer. As thrilling as it is to see his hands turn into blurs over the guitar strings, the studio music remains strong. Woody Allen recognized this as well and commissioned Wrembel to compose the theme for “Midnight in Paris.” Plus the style is right up Woody’s alley. Don’t let this connection fool you into thinking that what I am presenting is mere novelty. Stephane Wrembel is a world-class musician and easily one of the best guitarists I have ever seen.
On “Origins” he showcases every facet of his skill, imagination and moods. He is serious on “Momentum” and “Water is Life,” playful on “The Edge” and “The Selfish Gene” then downright somber on “Vox Populi.” One track is actually a tribute to Carl Sagan. Stephane handles jazz, classical and gypsy styles with ease, while keeping a distinct European flavor throughout. The supporting band is outstanding. Hell they have to be just to keep up. Nonetheless it is the guitar that grabs all the attention. He is just unbelievably good.
With all the manufactured pop, programmed beats, auto-tune and techno garbage out there, real musicians seem to have been pushed aside. Granted there is a place for technology and what it has to offer, but it should not mask authentic creativity. We must not forget what music is and should be. Great musicians need to be rewarded for their talent instead of ignored. It isn’t ‘boring’ kids. Open your ears and listen with your mind. Yes that’s right, you can actually use your brain when music is playing. In fact it’s better that way. So check out “Origins” by Stephane Wrembel. This music is about as authentic as it gets. A whole new world may just open up and you will thank me for leading the way.
Stephane Wrembel – acoustic and twelve string guitar
Koran Hasanagic – rhythm guitar
Dave Speranza – acoustic bass
David Langlois – washboard/percussion
Nick Anderson – drums